CPUC Launches Self-Generation Incentive Program
The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has launched a program that will offer incentives to encourage customers of Pacific Gas and Electric, San Diego Gas and Electric, Southern California Edison, and Southern California Gas Co. to install self-generation units to lessen the electricity load on the power grid.
Under the $125-million-per-year program, called the Self-Generation Incentive Program, utility customers are encouraged to install generation systems on their own property to supply all or a portion of their on-site energy needs. Incentive funding will flow through 2004 to utility customers who purchase and install self-generation systems, including photovoltaics, wind turbines, fuel cells, microturbines, small gas turbines and internal combustion engines. To qualify for the program, the systems must be interconnected for parallel operation with the utility grid.
Utility customers who wish to qualify for a Level 1 incentive must install photovoltaics, fuel cells operating on renewable fuel, and wind turbines with a minimum size of 30kW and a maximum size of 1MW.
Utility customers who install fuel cells that operate on non-renewable fuels and utilize sufficient waste-heat recovery may aply for Level 2 funding. Although there is no minimum size for these systems, the maximum size is 1MW.
Utility customers who install microturbines, internal combustion engines and small gas turbines that utilize sufficient waste-heat recovery may apply for a Level 3 incentive payment. Although there is no minimum system size for these systems, the maximum size is 1MW.
Customers with qualifying Level 1 systems, with a completion date on or after January 1, 2001, are eligible to apply for retroactive incentive funding. Customers with qualifying Levels 2 and 3 systems, completed on or after March 27, 2001, may also apply for retroactive funding.